What is a Dental Exam?
It may feel intimidating to go to your first dental cleaning and exam simply because you don’t know what it entails. A dental exam is a simple and safe procedure that millions of people go through routinely to help ensure that their teeth stay healthy and strong.
During your dental exam, your dentist may ask questions such as if you’ve experienced any discomfort or other symptoms recently. If you’ve noticed that a tooth has been aching or feeling extra sensitive, make sure to let your dentist know so that they pay special attention to it and help resolve the issue.
Your new dentist will then examine your teeth and gums for any signs of inflammation or dental decay. They may also take x-rays to ensure that the inside of your teeth and jaw are healthy, too.
What is a Dental Cleaning?
When you visit the dentist for an exam, it’s an ideal time to have a dental cleaning done, as well. A dental hygienist will use special dental tools to gently scrape away any tartar build-up and stains. At the end of your visit, they will polish each tooth with a special polishing toothpaste to make your smile look and feel its best.
How Often Should You Return?
Dentists typically recommend that patients visit every 6 months for a dental cleaning and exam. More frequent visits may be recommended if the patient has underlying health issues that can affect their dental health or if ongoing conditions such as advanced gum disease are detected.
Talking with Your New Dentist
Your first dental cleaning and exam is an important time to establish communication with your new dentist. Don’t hesitate to ask any questions you have or bring up any concerns. A good start to the conversation can be to ask what the recommended plan is moving forward. Your new dentist will be glad to hear that you take an interest in your dental health. Talking with your new dentist is a great opportunity for your dentist to build trust so that you can feel informed about any procedures and confident that your dental care is in good hands.